Perigueux is the city where I grew up and lived until I was 18 (Floriane). So I’m a true Périgourdine! My family still lives there, so we go there regularly on weekends or vacations.
Even today, I still enjoy strolling through the old pedestrian streets, contemplating the ancient Gallo-Roman and medieval buildings and sampling the local specialties .
I love showing my friends and family around the capital of the Dordogne and Périgord Blanc. It’s a pleasant city that appeals to all travelers. I had to write an article about this little corner of paradise.
Below, we share with you what to see and do in Périgueux, our 10 must-sees, our ideal walking itinerary for a weekend and our secrets for visiting Périgueux like a local.
We also relied on my family and our friends in the Périgord region to unearth all these nuggets and bring you the most comprehensive articlepossible.
- What to see and do in Périgueux our top 10
- Visit Périgueux on foot for a weekend?
- Itinerary on our map
- Calendar of events
- How to come to Périgueux ?
- Practical information (accommodation, restaurants…)
- What to visit around Perigueux ?
What to see and do in Périgueux our top 10
As you’ll see, there’s plenty to see and do in Périgueux, and it changes with the seasons, so we’ve put a lot of thought into this top 10 list!
- A bird’s eye view of Périgueux from Saint-Front Cathedral (summer)
- Explore the medieval center of Périgueux on foot
- Take the most beautiful photo of Périgueux, along the Isle river
- Discover Périgueux on the water, by canoe
- Enjoy the incredible atmosphere on market days
- Try one of Périgourdine’s delicious culinary specialties (truffles, foie gras, Sarladaise potatoes…)
- Explore the ancient city of Vesona and its Gallo-Roman Vesuna Museum
- Admire the pretty half-timbered houses on the quayside
- Périgueux’s famous fat and truffle markets (autumn and winter)
- Events that will keep you coming back all year round, including Mimos, the summer street arts festival!
Visit Périgueux on foot for a weekend?
The city of Périgueux can be visited easily, on foot, in 2 days. It is a city where it is pleasant to stroll, in order to discover at the bend of a curve superb buildings or a pleasant small place to take a break.
We recommend that you visit the contemporary and medieval city on the first day, that is to say the protected sector of Périgueux, which extends from the quays to all the alleys around the Mataguerre Tower. Then, on the second day, the many remains of the ancient Roman city.
Day 1 – Market and walking tour in the old Périgueux: the medieval part
On the first day, enjoy the incredible atmosphere of the market on Place du Coder and Place de la Clautre, and try out the specialties of the Périgord region.
Several cafés and bars surround the different markets, it is an ideal moment to drink a coffee while observing the pleasant surrounding agitation, Café De La Truffe, Café Crème (with view on the Saint-Front cathedral)…
Our must-sees: the foie gras market, where you can buy Périgord foie gras, and the truffle market, where you can smell and buy real Périgord truffles. The producers, passionate, will also give you plenty of explanations and advice.
The days and times of the markets are indicated below in the agenda section.
After a good meal in one of the many restaurants of the city, it’s time to explore the old town.
Thetourist office located in the Place du Coderc offers tourist circuits to discover the different points of interest of the city. We recommend that you download the @Perigueux Android and Apple Store application which also offers several routes.
➡️ Our itinerary to not miss anything, we suggest a route of about 2km, count 3h of visit, excluding the visit of the roofs. The numbers in brackets allow you to find the places mentioned on our map :
1.Saint-Front Cathedral and its roofs (1)
Listed as aUnesco World Heritage Site, it is the emblematic building of Périgueux. It is a must, that you cannot miss, during your stay in Périgueux! It was restored by the architect Paul Abadie, who later designed the Sacré-Coeur in Paris.
Our recommendation: Take the high ground and visit the roofs of the cathedral to see the different domes up close. This visit will allow you to have very beautiful points of view on the river, the center and the surroundings of Périgueux. An unforgettable activity that we’ve already done 3 times!
Visits possible from May to October, from €4, by contacting the Périgueuxtourist office. The interior of the cathedral is open to the public Monday to Friday, 9am to 12:30pm and 2pm to 6pm.
2. Stroll through the narrow streets and charming squares of the town center:
Discover on foot the Place du Marché au Bois (2), the adorable Rue Limogeanne (3) (a must-see), a cobbled pedestrian street, the Place Saint-Louis (4) with its small restaurants and famous statue, and the charming Place Saint-Silain (5)…
Our recommendation: stop off at Place du Marché au Bois for a home-made “Aux glaces de Fanny” ice-cream waffle, in the shade of the tall trees, to regain your strength before the rest of your visit! You may come across us, this is one of our favorite sweet breaks in Périgueux!
3. Explore the medieval part of Périgueux :
Start with the magnificent Mataguerre tower (6), the last tower of the medieval wall that protected the city.
Then continue towards the pretty half-timbered houses of the quays: theEschif (7), “moulin de Saint-Front” a magnificent half-timbered house, then the house of the consuls (8) and finally the Lambert house (9) with its pretty columns.
4. Discover the green way and take THE most beautiful picture of Perigueux :
The quays along the Isle river are another place not to be missed, during your stay in Périgueux. You can rent bicycles for a longer ride, or go canoeing (more about that below) to enjoy beautiful views over the city.
Our recommendation: crossing the Pont des Barris, the pleasant stroll along the Isle offers an incredible view of Saint-Front cathedral (10), and you’ll be able to take one of the cathedral’s finest photos!
➡️A Périgueux, we recommend a trip with the Périgueux canoe club, which offers several routes, including one along the quays of Périgueux with a lovely view of Saint-Front cathedral. Thanks to our friend Kevin, our canoeing expert in the Dordogne, who has been canoeing in clubs for many years and who recommended this club for which he used to work and this trip!
5. Museum of Art and Archaeology of the Périgord, ideal for families
In case of bad weather, you can go to the museum of art and archeology of Périgord located in the center of Périgueux.
This is an ideal family activity for children, with a treasure hunt that takes them through the various rooms, with the game changing regularly.
My sister and I were almost running (calmly, yes, it’s possible)!
Day 2 – The city of Vesona and its renovated museum: Vesuna, the Roman part
On the second day, we recommend exploring the ancient city of Vesone and the new Gallo-Roman museum built around the Vestiges by Jean Nouvel (originally from Sarlat).
We recommend a short walk 20 minutes from the town center, with an interactive museum and two Gallo-Roman remains.
1. Explore the ancient city of Vesonius and its museum Vesuna
The Gallo-Roman remains include a tower and the remains of a Domus (villa) dating from the 1st to 3rd centuries, now restored as a handsome interactive museum with full glass windows, completely open to the outside world. There are descriptive cards everywhere, as well as videos, and tablets showing the different eras of the site.
The volumes have been preserved, which will allow you to realize the volumes of the houses of the time. Underneath the rooms you can see the hypocaust heating system.
2. Observe the tower of Vesonius
It’s located right next to the museum, so you might see some of the schoolchildren doing their athletics!
3. Stroll through the garden of the arena and its 2nd century amphitheater
Stroll through this pretty garden to discover the remains of the amphitheatre, then head back to the center of Périgueux for lunch. For the record, a few years ago, the area in front of the fountain was used as ahuge swimming pool for Périgourdins!
Itinerary on our map
Calendar of events
The Périgord is famous for its gastronomy. In Périgueux, many markets take place where you can try all the specialties of the region.
The producers offer local products in a warm atmosphere. These markets animate the city, do not miss them during your stay in Périgueux. It is possible to eat on site.
- Every morning, from Monday to Sunday in winter period : Coderc Square, Coderc Hall.
- On Wednesdays and Saturdays, the market also extends to Place de la Clautre, Place de l’Hôtel de Ville and Place Saint-Silain.
Truffle and fat markets…
- Marché au gras: from November to March, every Wednesday and Saturday morning from 8am to 12pm, Place Saint-Louis.
- Truffle market: from December to February (depending on supply), every Saturday morning, in the Maison du Pâtissier (place Saint-Louis), from 8.30am to 12pm.
- Summer gourmet nights: every Wednesday evening in July and August, large tables are set up for tasting delicious products in a festive atmosphere.
- Christmas village : from late November to early January, Les Chalets set up shop in the center of town. As well as an ice rink and a funfair. Illuminations are also projected onto Saint-Front Cathedral every evening.
- Mimos: not to be missed, international festival of mime and circus arts (late July). It takes place every year in theaters, streets, parks … of Perigueux. The program offers free and paying shows. During this period, Périgueux enjoys a pleasant, festive atmosphere. We love to go there when we are in France at that time.
- Torchlight walks – in summer
- Maccadam jazz/concert in the streets – Tuesdays in July and August
- Sinfonia-Festival International de Musique Baroque – Late August
- Péri’meuh – in September
- International Gourmet Book Fair – biennial November
How to come to Périgueux ?
- By car: Most of the parking spaces located in the city center are not free. Good plan, the parking located on Place Montaigne, the one located below the Saint-Front cathedral, as well as the one located on the quays next to the restaurant La Péniche, are free. They are located a few minutes from the historic center.
- By train: Bus line B connects the station with the city center. The train ride from Paris is quite long, about 4 hours, with a connection in Limoges or a connection in Bordeaux. The train from Bordeaux is direct (1h15 minutes).
- By plane: this is a faster option. From Paris, air France’s hop company connects Orly airport with Brive airport in just 1 hour, at very attractive fares.
When arriving in Brive, renting a car is the best option to reach Périgueux in a little over an hour. If you’re staying for longer than a weekend, you can take the opportunity to explore the region.
Practical information (accommodation, restaurants…)
Where to eat?
Périgueux is famous for its gastronomy, one of the best in France! You really shouldn’t be disappointed.
- Wine cellar: Chai Bordinoffers a wide selection of local wines. Our recommendation: the wine merchant gives excellent advice and takes the time to help his customers, so ask for a wine to match your dishes.
- Périgord specialities: Maison Éric Requierproducer of Foie Gras du Périgord and regional products from the South-West. Our recommendations our “coucounettes“the famous figs with Foie Gras this sweet and savory blend will surprise you! The Royal duck breast cooked with coarse salt and filled with whole foie gras for an unforgettable aperitif!
- Chocolates, ice creams and desserts: Joseph, the excellent chocolatier from Périgueux, was named “Best of the Best Chocolatiers at the Salon Mondial du Chocolat in Paris. Our recommendation: the chocolate ice cream and its caramel-walnut chocolate bar, a true regional delight.
- Wiki Burger This is the best burger in Périgueux, made exclusively with local produce: beef from Mazières. Artisanal bread from the Boulangerie de la cité. French fries with duck fat…. Lunch and dinner – menu about 10€ – terrace
- Hercule Poireau: our favorite restaurant, a must in Périgueux offering refined cuisine in a magnificent setting, lovely owners! Lunch and dinner – menu from €30 to €80 – small terrace – reservations recommended
Where to stay in Périgueux?
Nous vous recommandons de séjourner aux Apparts Limogeanne une adresse charmante, au cœur du centre historique de Périgueux (secteur sauvegardé) dans une rue piétonne, à 5 minutes de tout, cathédrale Saint-Front, restaurants, office du tourisme…
Les logements sont entièrement équipés et meublés (linge de lit et de maison, Nespresso, Netflix…). Ils viennent tout juste d’être rénovés avec beaucoup de goût. Il y a la climatisation, ce qui a été fort appréciable lors des fortes chaleurs estivales. C’est tout simplement l’un de nos meilleurs hébergements !
If you are looking for an Airbnb rental in Perigueux follow this link 🙂
What to visit around Perigueux ?
We’re preparing a full article with a turnkey itinerary for visiting the Périgord or Dordogne, the two names still used to name this département. In the meantime, here are a few ideas for things to do and see, no more than 1 hour from Périgueux.
- A canoe trip on the Dordogne or Vézère rivers, departing from Périgueux, Le Bugue, Brantôme…
- Sturgeon breeding and caviar tasting in Neuvic sur l’Isle (about 25 minutes from Périgueux)
- The town of Brantome, also known as the Green Venice (about 25 minutes from Périgueux)
- The visit of the artisanal biscuit factory La Chanteracoise (about 30 minutes from Périgueux)
- The velorail in Périgord noir, a pleasant ride in the middle of nature on an old railroad (about 35 minutes from Périgueux)
- An outing in the forest, the courses are really pleasant in the middle of the forest (about 35 minutes from Périgueux)
- The incredible cave of Lascaux IV, remember to book your ticket in advance on the internet (about 50 minutes from Perigueux)
- The national museum of prehistory in Les Eyzies de Tayac (about 50 minutes from Périgueux)
- The magnificent gardens and the Eyrignac manor (about 1 hour from Périgueux)
- The lovely medieval village of Sarlat (about 1h15 from Périgueux), you can combine a visit to Sarlat with a tour of the Lascaux caves, information and booking here .
We really enjoyed writing this article about a city we know (almost) by heart. We’d like to thank our family and friends for their invaluable advice, and we’ll be updating this article regularly as we visit Périgueux several times a year. If you enjoyed reading it as much as we enjoyed writing it, don’t hesitate to give it 5 stars below!
We wish you an excellent stay in Perigueux! Feel free to drop us a note below to let us know if you are planning this trip, ask any questions or share on social media(our Instagram) we will be more than happy to respond!